Wednesday, February 17, 2010

More Fire

Today was much like yesterday, only amplified.  Again, I went in to work at Troy to take care of any loose ends, paperwork, and to check in with my coworkers.  Then I headed over to Ichetucknee to meet up with the rest of our burn team.  It was really cold this morning, and windy.  That made for great burn conditions for the area that we wanted to burn today.  We had some very impressive fire today... and I left my camera in my truck.  I was so disappointed when I realized that I had forgotten it.  I did take a few shots with my phone, but I ran low on storage space.  I always see the most amazing things when I don't have my camera.  I guess its good to leave it behind sometimes, but I wish that I could have shared what I saw.

Once we put some fire on the ground, none of us were cold anymore.  The wind was pushing the flames right through our burn zone.  It was much hotter than yesterday.  Because my team trailed in the fire truck for most of the day yesterday, we got to light the best areas today.  We started moving along on one side while the other team worked on the more dense areas that didn't burn as easily.  It was really exciting to be able to light just the very edge of the area and watch the fire push through, hot and steady.  I lit small sections at a time and waited a little to make sure it didn't burn too much too fast.  The fire was so hot that I had to stand well ahead of the fire while I waited. 

Because our section lit and burned much faster than the other teams, we covered most of the burn zone and met up with them on the dense side.  The wind really pushed the fire into the dense areas and much more of it burned than I expected.  It really needed it.

Once we were done lighting, we let things burn a little more and one person walked into the zone to light some burnable areas in the middle.  We didn't have to do much mop up, which is when we put out anything still burning near the edge of the zone.  The zones we burned today are bordered in some areas by what we burned yesterday, so there is little to no risk of any fire moving that way.  We were also careful on the sides that did have sensitive areas nearby to keep most dead trees or snags from igniting.  They are hard to put out once they are burning and if they are at the edge of zone, they could smolder and fall overnight into another zone.

It was a good day, but I am sore and tired and ready for a day off.  It feels good though.

No comments: